UN fears operation near Mosul will displace 30 000 more Iraqis

2016-05-03 18:24
An Iraqi child at the Dibaga camp for displaced Iraqis. (Safin  Hamed, AFP)

An Iraqi child at the Dibaga camp for displaced Iraqis. (Safin Hamed, AFP)

Multimedia   ·   User Galleries   ·   News in Pictures Send us your pictures  ·  Send us your stories

Baghdad - An ongoing joint Iraqi operation against the Islamic State group south of the city of Mosul could displace 30 000 civilians in the coming weeks, the UN refugee agency warned on Tuesday.

Iraqi federal and Kurdish forces backed by the US-led coalition against ISIS launched the offensive in March in the province of Nineveh, of which jihadist-controlled Mosul is the capital.

These forces are still at least 50km south of Iraq's second city but the fighting there has been forcing thousands of civilians from their homes.

An existing camp in Dibaga, which lies east of Makhmur - the main staging ground for that operation - already hosts around 8 000 people, the UN High Commissioner for Refugees said.

It said it opened a new camp on the grounds of a football stadium in Dibaga this week "in response to increasing numbers of newly displaced families".

"As many as 30 000 newly displaced individuals may arrive in Makhmur over the coming weeks as the military offensive continues," the UNHCR said in a statement.

"The newly built facility will help to ease some of the overcrowding that we have seen since the latest fighting began," said Fred Cussigh, head of UNHCR's field response unit in the area.

The aid community is concerned that a massive military operation to retake Mosul will cause displacement on a scale that Iraq cannot handle.

According to some estimates, up to one million civilians may still live in Mosul, which has been ISIS's main hub in Iraq since it took over the city in June 2014.

At least 3.4 million people have already been displaced in Iraq since the beginning of 2014.

Read more on:    iraq

Join the conversation!

24.com encourages commentary submitted via MyNews24. Contributions of 200 words or more will be considered for publication.

We reserve editorial discretion to decide what will be published.
Read our comments policy for guidelines on contributions.

Inside News24

Traffic Alerts
There are new stories on the homepage. Click here to see them.


Create Profile

Creating your profile will enable you to submit photos and stories to get published on News24.

Please provide a username for your profile page:

This username must be unique, cannot be edited and will be used in the URL to your profile page across the entire 24.com network.


Location Settings

News24 allows you to edit the display of certain components based on a location. If you wish to personalise the page based on your preferences, please select a location for each component and click "Submit" in order for the changes to take affect.

Facebook Sign-In

Hi News addict,

Join the News24 Community to be involved in breaking the news.

Log in with Facebook to comment and personalise news, weather and listings.